Thursday, October 31, 2013
An attorney who "engaged in numerous acts of misconduct by behaving in an unprofessional and antagonistic manner during the course of a civil case" was suspended for two years by the Florida Supreme Court.
The court rejected the referee's proposed 90 day suspension:
There are proper types of behavior and methods to use when aggressively representing a client. Screaming at judges and opposing counsel, and personally attacking opposing counsel by disparaging him and attempting to humiliate him, are not among the types of acceptable conduct but are entirely unacceptable. One can be professional without being obnoxious.
The attorney also was ordered to appear personally before the court for a reprimand.
The attorney "argued that his voice is naturally loud, he speaks loudly when he feels he is not being heard, and he is working with a behavioral therapist to correct his behavior. The referee found Respondent's explanation concerning the volume of his voice patently unbelievable."
Footnote 5: "Members of The Florida Bar, law professors, and law students should study the instant case as a glaring example of unprofessional behavior." (Mike Frisch)